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its been yet another long slog winter here in gm land and i an done pleasing the managers...all of csi...i have had run around after run around with the dealer fighting for hours. seeing losser techs who know noithg who care less to make you the customer better off is so sad....i care and i am dam good have never to this day of the hundreds of d/max i have worked on ever had a come back....i work hard and listen offer help and try my best to see you the owner back on the road. i have pulled string for owners and advisors have done all i could. i an a tech 3 yrs of gm and 2 yrs off school yet i and only good to my dealer for a small $10 bucks flat..... thats it....asked for a raise to help support my baby in may. the answer "nope" your not good enough..we have frozen raised 6-8 months... i flag 90 plus hrs a check....could be mors if they paid time to test drive and call tech assist and time spent fstanding in line waiting of advisors to call people 3 hrs after you give an estament.....you guys are great.. i want to help but am at the end of the rope...........they pul me on the lube rack today stating it to busy on the lube and slow in the shop we need you there....after all your only a kid (26 yrs old ) kid eh......look at it this way at least we havent let you go......gm cert diesel...ase steering suspension hvac diesel engines 2 yrs of school 7 hrs a day got degree in auto and diesel at the price of 20k....i have got the skills yet not the ace wide enough to take the gm shaft.......so as of this week i am hanging up all the new tools 7k tool box just paid for...and searching for better.....anyone got ideas....i have been a gear head form age 8...am dam good honest and work hard....thanks for letting me vent when no one else wants to listen.....not even the managers.............................................................................................................
 

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Good luck Pat .... You deserve better and I hope you find it .....


Stick around here no matter what flavor of auto you end up at ....





Mac
 

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Man I am sorry to hear this. As a GM tech I can completly uderstand where you are coming from. I myself have only been doing this for almost 3 years now and in the short amount of time I have been doing this things have only gotten worse. One of my buddies who I work with that has been doing this 20+ years told me when I started things were going down hill. At first I took it with a grain of salt, but now that I understand how things work I see for myself what is going on. It sucks and thats all there is too it. Labor rates going up flat rates going down, too much warranty work and not enough customer pay.


Like I say I understand and I sympathize with you. It scares me to now where things are headed and at the same time love doing this so much. I wish you luck in whatever you do.


Tanner
 

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Ever thought about big diesels? I build CAT, Cummins and Detroits. Pays better than automotive. Parts are heavier but there is more room to work. All the new engines are electronic too- shouldn't be much of a change for you to pick up. I think there is a Pacific Detroit Diesel in Portland. I worked at their Hawaii branch for a few years. They were good people. Only left because I moved to Mississippi. Something to think about.
 

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Regardless of our occupation of choice, we are only worth what someone will pay us. Regardless of how good we think we might be, everyone is replaceable.


Before you up & quit, I would first check out other shops to see what you are worth. If they offer you a job for better pay & benefits, then the choice is obvious. If not, you basically have three choices; 1) Stay put and make the best of it, 2) start your own repair shop, 3) start a new career.


Since you do have a baby on the way, I would think long and hard about option 2, at least until you have a client base built up and are assured of some income. With the poularity of diesel pickups, there may very well be good business to be had when these trucks run out of warranty and people do not want to pay dealer rates.


My last word of advise is to be sure you have other options available before you threaten to quit. Otherwise, your boss may take you up on the threat, and leave you on the street with a sign that reads "WILL WORK FOR DIAPERS".


Good Luck, and keep a positive attitude.
 

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I know this is not what you want to hear, but I would have to agree with "sammy." Don't let your feelings dictate your future. It is always easier to find a job when you still have one. Most importantly, think about that baby. They sure are expensive, but worth every dime. God did not make them cheap.Edited by: Bowhunter
 

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Sammy and Bowhunter have a good point. Use this time to get a good resume together. There are a lot of dealers without good Dmax techs, as we have heard on this forum. You should be able to get another job without a problem. Hang in there.
 

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Ever thought of opening up a shop of your own. Or even partners with someone to cut down on overhead.


Most people I know hate going to the dealer for anything other than warranty. They rip you off on the hourly rate, do poor quality work (don't get me started), don't stand behind thier inferior repairs, and I swear they do a little tinkering in there to make sure you have to come back.


If you go to a nation wide repair company (Canadian Tire in Canada) they're even worse. One mechanic for every 10 dropouts making mininum wage. All they want to do is give you a list of all the repairs that urgently needed.


An honest person in a small shop will pick up a lot of buisness just through word of mouth. I deal with a guy that will not do any work on the vehicle before it needs to be done and you better not be in a hurry because he is always swamped. At least he has a few loaner cars.


Just my $.02 worth. Good luck with what ever you choose to do.
 

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I agree, get something better lined up then quit.


The most successful people I know took an overall look at the entire industry and figured out where the money was at, which niche.


Example: I know a good mechanic with no certifications whatsoever. He likes Baja racing, so he decided to work on trophy trucks. All sorts of people race Baja, from motorcycles to $250K - $400K trophy trucks. Obviously the money is in the trophy trucks.


After every race, he goes over with his trailer and picks up his 3 customers' trucks. He tears them down and sends out stuff to be tested/rebuilt. Reassembles it all and charges $6,000 cash for labor, plus parts and outside work. This takes him 2 weeks for the 3 cars and they are each run in about 10-12 races a yr.


Since he has 2 weeks off every month and gets paid about $220,000/yr cash and never has to deal with warranty work, supervisors, paperwork, service writers, doofus lotboys, dingdong customers, etc, he's a pretty happy guy.


He bought a 40' toybox trailer to live in, 12 acres to build on and built a 6 bay garage with lifts, solvent tank, presses, welders, a lathe, and a spray booth. He's now building his dream home, 2 weeks at a time, he just goes to Home Depot with cash and hauls his materials up and builds for 2 weeks, makes money for 2 weeks, etc.


When finished shortly, he'll have no mortgage and can walk 20 feet to work. With that income and that much free time, he can indulge in his hobbies and he has a 40ft trailer to tow his race cars or sand rail, while camping in luxury.


I only mention all of this because he figured out where the money is. You've got all of your credentials - now it's time to figure out where the easy money is, and go there.


Cadillac dealership? Mercedes dealership? Local racing teams? Big trucks? County mechanic? My neighbor is a diesel tech for the county, looks like he's doing really well...


Good luck to you and congrats on the coming baby!
 

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In some dealer's eyes, a good mechanic is one who generates them the highest short-term income. Max book hrs/day, max parts, min warranty hrs. Mechanics and writers who list work not actually done, sell parts that don't need replacement, and deny warranty claims, generate big $$$ in the short term. But often in the long haul, they lose repeat business.
 

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This isnt exactly what I want to hear as I am going to school right now for Diesel's. I probably wont be working at an automotive dealer though.
 

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Great advice for the young FAMILY man. Please listen to your fellow fourm members. Good LUCK!!! Brian
 

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Patrick,

Know a guy here who was in pretty much the same boat. He hit up every family member he could and the lender at a small local bank and borrowed enough money to get him into a small shop with enough money to pay the rent and utilities for two years. This was about 8 years ago. He now has all the work he wants, has a couple more young guns working for him and is making a good living. He does quality work, stands behind it, doesn't gouge his customers and has never advertised. Preserverance and dedication paid off for him. He told me it was the scariest thing he ever did, but once he made up his mind he knew he would do well. The first year was pretty lean with all the money going back into the business and to pay back the family loans but he had steady growth that allowed him to get over the hump and grow into a good solid business today.

Good luck with whatever you road you take Amigo.

Mike
 

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Patrick,


You are the guy I would want working on my vehicle if I drove into that shop! It's to bad that you are beeing treated the way you are, but I guess thats life at your dealership and it appears you are ready for a change. I would do as others have said and find another job before just up and quitting. This will show you are presently employed, and will also let your dealership know that you are looking. Sometimes boss's don't want to give raises to deserving workers. They don't always realize who is making them shine. Have you spoken to the owner of the dealership? I would think you may want to try that approach if you are at all interested in staying at that dealership and let him no your opinions, sometimes this can make big changes ( not always though). In the end you do need to do what is right for you. There are many other members post here with great adivce, but you in the end will have to decide which road you choose. I am just telling you to take a little time and be sure of your move before just up and quitting. Like others have said here it certainly sounds as if you could go out on your own with no troubles, but that is a rough road in the begining and is a lot of responsibility, but I am sure it's very do-able for you from the post I have read from you. As MAC had stated no matter what please hang around here no matter what your choice is. I can say I have enjoyed reading your post and can tell you certainly have a lot of knowledge in the field.


Best luck in what ever you decide. Fran
 

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I'll second the big truck mechanic or start your own shop.


I had a new baby and a new truck in spring of '93 and quit my factory job, bought a semi and started hauling liquid tar first then flatbeds then subcontracted to a local asphalt paving co.


Then in fall of '95 GM called me on Thursday while I was paving the New Albany bypass and offered me an apprenticeship as tool/die maker start Monday, so I'm a diemaker now.


Around my area the good techs get bid-on by other dealers trying to get them to switch.


There was an ad in yesterdays Cleveland paper for a Peterbilt dealership about to open, wanted techs and SM.


Life's short so I wouldn't want to be stuck unhappy.


Ever thought about relocating?
 

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I dont want to add fuel to the fire on this, but Patrick, I know exactly where your coming from. I wouldnt know you if you slapped my face, but we feel we can learn alot from people by how they represent themselves on the forums. You can say your anybody, but if your putting up a front, its hard to maintain it. Patrick, you are a good man. Dont let that BS about your age get in your way. I am 26 myself. I started in the dealership right out of highschool in 95 and had two years of aftermarket shop experience prior to that. I dont know what top techs make in your area so I am hesitant to comment on your worth in relation to your area. I do know this as many have already said, good diesel techs are hard to come by in the dealer. The downside is that most shops dont have enough work to support a sole diesel tech and I am sure you are far more experienced then just diesels, so that wont be a hinderance for you. As Sid, Tanner, even FatCat ( I think) can attest, the strain of pleasing the customer so your CSI score stays up, pleasing the manager(s) and while doing all that maintaning a paycheck really is stressfull. I find it very supprising that they are actually moving you off the line when your turning good hours. Its hard to find a guy that can turn over 100 % efficency. Let alone maintain it. I have to be honest, Before I got into diesels, I was turning 145-160% effeciency, but after "specializing" in them, I am down to 125% or so. Keep your head up, remember, they can take away your position, but they cant take away your tools and more importantly your knowledge, There is a boatload of training to go to get certified and even know they dont appreciate it, somebody will. I can agree with you, the dealership is no place to make a career. I have been in the car business for 10 years now and already decided I am not gonna be in it when my kid(s) graduates. I dont know what I am gonna do, but when I look around all the shops I have been too and the middle aged guys, I already have what they have, make more money then most.. hence, whats my future? I have often thought of starting my own place, but then your stress level isnt gonna change. Its hard to land those gravy jobs where you two weeks on and two weeks off, most of them come more by chance I think. (ps-I would look like to fall into that chance
) Just keep your chin up, get your resume built and get it out. I dont know if your gonna take a pay hit in the mean time, but do your best, get some side jobs and find a place that appreciates your dedication. I agree with the above, I dont know where your located out there, but dont limit your search to the local shops. I moved across state from where I started, Grand Rapids has a better market then Saginaw/ Bay City. Remember, we are all in this togather friend



Fellow Tech-


Eric Merchant
 

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I have a friend who got fed up being a tech(worked him to death for little pay), so he became a Snap-on dealer. He loves his new job selling tools. Just another posibility...
 

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Patrick, these guys have said it all, very little I can add. I'm 66 and retired now after 50 years of working. And although i'm sure it's no comfort to you, the struggles of the line mechanic in a new vehicle dealership have been going on as long as I have been around friends who were in these jobs, and that's been for at least those 50 years.


Run a printout of your GM training, gather up all your other school and training certificates, prepare yor resume, and see what's available.


Then go to the Service Manager, and if necessary, the dealership manager or owner with a calm and factual presentation of your grievance, state that you want to stay onboard, but shop policies and politics are making it tough. Don't threaten to quit unless you are in a position to do so. Just let them know you are unhappy and looking elsewhere. If you are truly of value to them, they will see the light and staighten things out.


There were suggestions to consider heavy equipment mechanic, and I have a friend who went from line mechanic to heavy equipment mech. years ago and has done well. But it took many weekends of side work in his own shop to pay the bills till he built up enough training and experience to be the top paid field tech for the heavy equipoment dealer for whom he worked.


I have other friends who elected the route of their own business, some made lots of money and are well off today. Some lost their ass! A small business of any kind is tough at the start, no fringe benefits such as health care insurance, paid holidays, paid vacation, sick leave, retirement, etc.


The decision is yours, my friend, and only you can make it. The best advice I can offer is don't burn any bridges along the way. I did a bit of burning, and lived to regret it!


I wish you and your young family the best in your efforts, and please, stay with us.
 
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